Autumn Equinox Soup

Originally published October 10, 2021 Harvest Fig Soup

As we begin to prepare for Autumn and Winter, it is important to nourish the Metal element by adding more Yin foods to protect us from the dryness of the season. Plus, we LOVE figs! Figs are one of the oldest cultivated crops throughout the world, and are often said to be a symbol of peace and abundance. Entering the Lung, Large Intestine and Stomach meridians, figs can promote the secretion of saliva to soothe a sore throat and dry cough, as well as being supportive to the functions of digestion and elimination. Pork, which is neutral, sweet and salty, also moistens dryness and benefits the Spleen, Stomach and Kidneys.

The herbs within this soup are all supportive for this season, and combine well together. Qian Shi and Lian Zi are sweet and neutral, entering the Spleen and Kidneys, with astringing properties. Lian Zi calms the Spirit and is helpful for Heart and Kidney Yin deficiency. Two of the Yin tonics, Bai He and Yu Zhu, are sweet and cooling, sharing the function of entering the Lung meridian to clear heat and moisten dryness from Yin deficiency patterns presenting with a dry mouth and sore throat. Bai He also clears Heart heat and calms the Spirit, and Yu Zhu tonifies the Qi of the middle Jiao, along with Yi Yi Ren. The third Yin tonic, Bei Sha Shen, nourishes Lung, Stomach, Kidney and Liver Yin and cools Lung Heat, particularly if there is phlegm. Long Yan Rou always adds a sweetness and warmth, entering the Heart and Spleen to nourish the Blood. Shan Yao is a sweet, and neutral Qi tonic, used in this recipe to anchor the functions of the other herbs and rounding out the depth of flavor and texture. Everything in this soup can be eaten, and we hope you enjoy this extremely nourishing and protective tonic for the Metal season!


  • ½ lb - lean pork, cut into cubes
  • 20 g – Shan Yao / Dioscorea opposita root / Chinese Yam
  • 20 g - Qian Shi / Euryale ferox seed / Fox Nut Barley
  • 20 g – Bei Sha Shen / Glehnia littoralis root
  • 15 g - Bai He / Lillium brownii bulb / Lily Bulb
  • 15 g - Yu Zhu / Polygonatum odoratum rhizome
  • 15 g – Yi Yi Ren / Coix lacryma-jobi seed / Job’s Tears
  • 15 g – Lian Zi (Bai) / Nelumbo nucifera seed (skinless) / White Lotus Seed
  • 3-4 pc – Long Yan Rou / Dimocarpus longan fruit / Longan Fruit
  • 2 pc - Wu Hua Guo / Dried Figs, cut in half
  • Salt to taste

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Scald pork in boiling water for 2-3 minutes, drain and rinse meat
  2. Rinse herbs<./li>
  3. Place all ingredients in 2 quarts of water and boil for 30 minutes. Reduce to low heat and simmer for 2 hours.
  4. Skim top as needed
  5. Salt to taste and serve

For more Autumn recipes, please see visit our Recipes page!

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